Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Sexual Abuse.

Of all places for sexual abuse to take place why does it happen in the Church?

You would think that the high moral standards of the Church would protect it from such crimes.

But perhaps it is this very thing which is causing the problem.

In the past sex was never mentioned in church.
Such things were left at home.

Consequently any sexual impulses were forced down into a little box which was never opened.

This was very unhealthy and resulted in perversions of the sexual impulse.

This is why we see child sex abuse in the Church and its institutions.

The reason for this comes from the writings of St. Paul and his doctrinal descendants.

Paul set up a conflict between body/sexuality and spirit.
The spirit was pure and good, the body was carnal and corrupt.

Later St. Augustine linked sex to original sin to complete the complex.

Fear of losing contact with God caused Christians to repress their strong natural urges.

This has resulted in the current sex abuse scandals.

And this is not new.
John Chrysostom reported widespread abuse among the bishops of Antioch in the 6th century.

There is a lot of fear surrounding sex in the Church.
Even more now that the abuse scandals have broken.

Fear is not the answer.
Fear is the problem.

The Church will never outgrow sexual abuse until it develops a healthy attitude towards sex.

Sex is a natural part of God's good creation.

That is why I am calling for a new Bar Mitzvah - a coming of age celebration which would normalize sexual development in teenagers - both heterosexual and homosexual.

This would go a long way to reducing the fear surrounding sex in the Church.

And it can not come too soon.

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